Northamptonshire Community Foundation is ‘thinking global and acting local’
Written by Martin Steers on September 10, 2020
Northamptonshire Community Foundation which is the lead grant making charity in the county has adopted the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) into its charitable activity. The foundation which has given out over £1.4 million in grants since April wants to help promote the UN SDGs locally to show how local action contributes to global good. The UN SDGs are 17 goals that the United Nations has set to help improve quality of life and wellbeing for all by 2030 which include tackling poverty, hunger, health and wellbeing and access to quality education.
Deputy CEO Rachel McGrath said: ‘Many of our partner community foundations across the globe from Canada to Mexico and Germany have embraced the UN SDGs into their work. Community Foundations embody the spirit of the development goals in that we think global and act local. We will promote the goals in our annual reviews and impact reports and we will work with donors to showcase how their donations and community investments are helping work towards the UN SDG goals. This Autumn we will commence with a series of community conversations online around each of the goals relating to the donors we work with and the community groups we fund on their behalf, bringing people together to discuss local solutions. We are committed to supporting the UN SDGs locally as part of our commitment to improve quality of life for all and especially in times of national and local emergencies such as during this public health crisis. We wish to ensure that no one is left behind and everyone feels that they belong to the local community now and in the future.’
Northamptonshire Community Foundation’s recent impact report on distributing funds during the coronavirus pandemic has already highlighted funded work that has helped contribute to the UN SDGs including the following examples:
UN SDG 1: No poverty
Baby Basics Northampton
During COVID-19 Baby Basics Northampton continued to support new mums on a low income. The group have been running as a core staff team of three and close their volunteer sessions for safety and social distancing. The grant awarded has enabled the group to purchase stock for emergency baskets of supplies including brand new Moses baskets (a safe place for the new baby to sleep), toiletries, sterilisers, baths, blankets, fitted sheets, baby grows and newborn baby clothing and socks. The grant has resulted in 50 baby basket starter packs completed to be sent to a new mum and baby to help keep them safe and well and items purchased for 12 further starter packs.
UN SDG 2: Zero hunger
SOFEA have helped establish a network of Community Larders across South Northamptonshire. 10 Larders have already been established in South Northamptonshire providing weekly food boxes to 1,900 vulnerable individuals and families. The organisation has waived their membership fee during the COVID-19 crisis to allow anyone in need to access and benefit from the larder network. SOFEA have been targeting vulnerable older people as well as families with children who would otherwise get free school meals, disadvantaged individuals and families who are socially isolated, those who are now in financial crisis and those unable to access regular food supplies.
UN SDG 3: Good health and wellbeing
Due to social distancing Corby Mind has been unable to support clients face to face. The awarded grant has enabled the group to provide over the phone advice, counselling and emotional support to their most vulnerable clients during lockdown. Corby Mind have developed a 5 week online anxiety course which they will continue to offer beyond COVID-19. The group has put in place a virtual phone line. This service has been offered 4 hours per day, six days per week and ensures people who need the service can access it. Corby Mind has responded to 451 calls and provided 232 call back calls through their call back service.
Northamptonshire Community Foundation are asking people to keep a look out on their social media channels in order to take part in the #UNSDG2030 chats on social media feeds later this year. You can also keep updated with this work by visiting their website – www.ncf.uk.com